The slowest free agent chase in the history of free agent chases apparently came to a close yesterday. The Red Sox got their man, signing JD Martinez to a contract. They waited and waited, and only had to cave slightly. So, the power hitting addition that so many people insisted the Sox needed will be on the team this season.
This wasn't a simple addition. It's not like the Sox had a physical hole that JD needed to fill. The Sox had a decent DH. They had a decent first baseman. They have one of the best outfields in baseball. There really isn't room for JD Martinez. They need to squeeze him in somewhere.
It's the somewhere that makes things the most interesting.
From the sounds of things, Hanley Ramirez will be getting his fair share of the at-bats at first base, with JD taking the primary role at DH. But, how does Mitch Moreland get into the game? He has to be more than a defensive replacement, right?
So, that would imply that there will be times where JD plays the outfield so that Hanley can DH and Moreland can play first. Or does he play the outfield when one of the B Boys needs a break? Or does JBJ sit against tough lefties? Does Cora just pick the best five options every game to play the outfield/DH/1B out of JD/Hanley/Mitch/Tendi/JBJ/Mookie? Sort of a Patriots style, "best players for any given game" approach?
Does that mean the Sox don't need a traditional fourth outfielder since their DH will play that role? If they still need one, how does he get any plate appearances? Speaking of plate appearances, how does Cora handle it if it looks like Hanley will come up just short of the number he needs to secure his option year?
It will be interesting to see how this all plays out. And, that's before we find out how Martinez will perform as a DH.
The Sox got their man.
It's what comes next that's most important.
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